Using smart technology to support people with severe mental illness

LONDON, ON – A research team from Lawson Health Research Institute will announce a new study evaluating the use of smart technologies in the home for people with severe mental illness residing in the community. 

After prototyping this approach within a hospital setting, the team has received additional funding to recruit participants living in affordable housing units at Canadian Mental Health Association and London and Middlesex Community Housing. 

Study participants can select from a wide range of tools, such as smartphones, touch-screen monitors and wireless health monitoring devices, to find the best mix to meet their individual needs. They will have access to an online platform to video-call their care team, send instant messages and complete questionnaires. 

“By integrating and testing these smart tools for health care, we are not simply looking at the technology but how it can be used as a tool for communication,” says Dr. Cheryl Forchuk, Assistant Scientific Director at Lawson and project lead for the Smart Home Community Model. “We see smart technology supporting more seamless communication between health care providers and the client – all from their own homes. This helps them better manage their care and overall wellbeing, flag issues earlier on and avoid trips to the clinic when appropriate.”

Date: Thursday, May 23, 2019
Time: 10:30 a.m. 
Location: 202 McNay Street, London, Ontario N5Y 4X1 (London and Middlesex Community Housing) 


Following brief speaking remarks, Dr. Cheryl Forchuk will be available for media interviews. There will also be demonstrations of the smart technology that will be used by study participants in the homes. All members of the media are asked to please RSVP to Laura Goncalves (contact details below). Additional photos and video clips available upon request. 


As the research institute of London Health Sciences Centre and St. Joseph's Health Care London, and working in partnership with Western University, Lawson Health Research Institute is committed to furthering scientific knowledge to advance health care around the world.


Laura Goncalves
Communications & External Relations
Lawson Health Research Institute
T: 519-685-8500 ext. 64059
C: 226-448-1525

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